Current Developments

Somaliland and Secession Politics in Eastern Africa

Somalia has been that isolated relative that no one speaks about. The one that lives in a little hut, far away from the general community, with little interaction with anyone. Nieces and nephews do not visit her, because she is said to be a witch. Everyone fears her, and so she is largely ignored. Nobody wants to go near her homestead. Since the overthrow of Siad Barre in 1991, Somalia …

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Current Developments

Examining the Legal Anomalies Created by Inconsistencies between the European Convention on Human Rights and the Dayton Constitution

On 15th February, 2016, Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter Bosnia) applied for membership to the European Union. It has since seen little progress towards achieving this goal, which is heavily due to the incompatibilities of its Constitution with the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (hereinafter the Convention). While Bosnia’s application for EU membership has brought these incompatibilities to the fore, this issue dates back to …

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Extraterritoriale Regulierung als Staatenpflicht

Kontext, Konflikte und Komplementarität

Kontext Zwei Aspekte des von der zwischenstaatlichen Arbeitsgruppe im September 2017 vorgelegten Diskussionspapiers, das die Grundlage des gegenwärtigen Tauziehens um eine verbindliche internationale Regelung der Unternehmensverantwortung für Menschenrechte bildet, sind aus der Perspektive des extraterritorialen Menschenrechtsschutzes von besonderer Relevanz. Erstens knüpft das Diskussionspapier den räumlichen Anwendungsbereich des anvisierten Instruments an Menschenrechtsverletzungen durch Unternehmen, die auf dem Territorium und/oder innerhalb des Kompetenzbereichs („jurisdiction“) des relevanten Staates stattfinden. Ein vergleichbarer Ansatz findet …

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Current Developments

Galeone San José: Schatzjagd und Unterwasserkulturerbe

Art. 16 der UNESCO-Konvention von 2001 ermöglicht effektive Schutzmaßnahmen

Als die im frühen 18. Jahrhundert gesunkene, vermutlich mit sagenhaften Schätzen beladene Galeone San José 2015 vor der Küste Kolumbiens geortet wurde, war dies eine internationale Sensation. Als kürzlich bekannt wurde, dass Kolumbien die Bergung des Schiffes im Rahmen einer Public-private-Partnership plant, bei der Teile des auf über 10 Milliarden US-Dollar geschätzten Fundes als Gegenleistung an beteiligte Unternehmen gelangen könnten, begegnete dies substantieller Kritik. Im April 2018 verabschiedete der Wissenschaftlich-Technische Beirat zum UNESCO …

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Which Business?

Controversies about the Scope of Application of a Future Treaty on Business and Human Rights

The United Nations treaty process, the current endeavor in the open-ended working group to draft a legally binding instrument to “regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises”, causes much trouble and controversy.

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Giving Human Rights a Future

The Transnational and Transformative Character of a Business and Human Rights Treaty

The future of human rights, as scholars and practitioners alike emphasize, depends on its ability to address economic inequality. For this aim, human rights lawmaking needs to listen to more voices than just the ones of the powerful states and the human rights movement needs to include more actors than it did in the past to tackle questions of fair distribution:

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Human Rights Due Diligence

An Exercise of Extraterritorial Jurisdiction?

In its recently released General Comment (GC) No 24 the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) makes a crucial point: It establishes that regulation imposing Human Rights Due Diligence (HRDD), although having potential extraterritorial effects and impacts, does not imply the exercise of extraterritorial jurisdiction. But is this really the case?

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Das Verhältnis von Handels- und Investitionsabkommen zu einem Abkommen zu Unternehmen und Menschenrechten

Anmerkungen in vierzehn Thesen

I. Der Ausgangsbefund: Wirtschaftsabkommen und Menschenrechte 1. Angesichts der vor allem seit den 1990er Jahren zu verzeichnenden Effektivierung und Erweiterung des Anwendungsbereichs des völkervertragsrechtlichen Handels- und Investitionsrechts sind vermehrt Fallkonstellationen denkbar und lassen sich in der Praxis auch bereits nachweisen, in denen auf dieser Grundlage eingegangene wirtschaftsrechtliche Verpflichtungen durch Maßnahmen einer Vertragspartei beeinträchtigt werden, welche diese unter Rekurs auf menschenrechtlich erfasste Schutzgüter rechtfertigt.

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

A Future Treaty on Business and Human Rights – Its Main Functions

The state-based paradigm of international human rights law poses a significant challenge to modern day human rights problems as traditional mechanisms largely fail to adequately address corporate conduct and to respond to corporate human rights violations. A prominent judge has therefore described the phenomenon of corporate human rights abuses as “the human rights issue of the 21st century”.

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Germany’s Moral Responsibility to Support a Treaty on Business and Human Rights

As a Jewish academic currently writing a book in Berlin, I am moved by the significant efforts in evidence across the city to remember the victims of the Holocaust. From the sobering stolpersteine to the powerful formal memorial sites, the terrible results of denying the worth and value of Jewish, Roma and gay individuals (amongst others) are clearly in evidence. Yet, memory of past violations cannot be enough: it must …

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Current Developments

It could have been worse

A Historian’s Impression of the Conference “Contingency in International Law: How International law could have been”

Both historians and jurists are intrigued by the future: historians – despite their habitual claims to the contrary – wish to say something meaningful about the future by studying the past, whereas jurists make and render law in order to establish justice, lawfulness, and ultimately peace. Yet, while historians at times reject the “learning from the past” paradigm, fearing an oversimplification of history, the papers presented at the conference on …

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Law and DevelopmentSymposium

Between (Re-)Empowerment and (Hyper-) Conditionality

The Rise of Accountability-Driven Governance in Development Cooperation

Ever since David Trubek and Mark Galanter’s seminal ‘Scholars in Self-Estrangement’, which Philip Dann, during the seminar that gave rise to this post, aptly termed the ‘law and development movement’s defining moment’, there has been intense self-reflection by scholars on the role of law in and for ‘development’ and about the analytical and normative currency of this approach. And in line with the broader ‘turn to history’ in law, this …

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Law and DevelopmentSymposium

Beyond the ‘Moments’ of Law and Development

Law and Development Scholarship in a Globalized Economy

An integral aspect of law and development (L&D) studies have been its intimate relationship with the global economy and the regulatory framework which governs it. A rapidly emerging arena of scholarship on law and development in recent years has been on the intersections between international economic law (IEL) and development. The emergence of this body of scholarship under the broad umbrella of L&D studies has important consequences for law and …

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Law and DevelopmentSymposium

Agenda 2030 -Time to Revisit Rule of Law programming

As the development community re-focuses on how the rule of law agenda enables sustainable development as expected in fulfilment of Agenda 2030, questions will continue to arise concerning the mixed results of rule of law assistance projects. D. Marshall in his treatise “The International Rule of Law Movement: A Crisis of Legitimacy and the Way Forward,” emphasizes that there is a profound knowledge deficit regarding the justice system, its actors, …

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Law and DevelopmentSymposium

Beyond a fourth moment in law and development

A plea for heterodoxy

In the wake of the decolonization wave after World War II, a law and development (L&D) practice and academic strand emerged. So far, scholarship on law and development that self-identifies as L&D has been predominantly economic in orientation. It has never moved beyond a market-friendly or market-centered approach. This tradition has also adopted a fairly naïve instrumentalist approach to law. I submit that scholars who are more concerned with the …

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Law and DevelopmentSymposium

Law and Development: Theory and Practice

The field of Law and Development studies positions itself at a highly interesting, yet academically challenging juncture: What is the relationship between law and social and economic development? For most scholars of Law and Development, this question itself tends to raise more questions than answers: What conceptions of law are we actually talking about? And should the notion of ‘development’ be critically re-appropriated beyond modernized ideals of economic growth? Or …

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Current Developments

‘Vetoing’ the admission of a third state in international organizations

Lessons learned from the Greece-fYROM case

On the 17th June, ‘the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’ (hereinafter: ‘fYROM’) and Greece signed an Agreement to resolve their 27-year-long dispute over the former’s name. Most importantly, fYROM committed to change its constitutional name from ‘Republic of Macedonia’ to ‘Republic of North Macedonia’ for both domestic and international purposes. The bizarre dispute (and the Agreement itself) has raised interesting legal questions, serving as the most prominent case of an inter-state battle over …

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DiscussionResponse

Neue Initiative der polnischen Regierung in Sachen deutscher Weltkriegsreparationen

Reparationsansprüche als Streitapfel auf dem Weg zur Aussöhnung

In seinem Beitrag unter dem Titel „Germany v. Italy 2.0?“ argumentiert Lukas Kleinert, dass der polnischen Regierung die Rechtsgrundlage für die Reparationsansprüche gegen die Bundesrepublik Deutschland fehle. Dieser Beitrag setzt sich mit Kleinerts Analyse auseinander und stellt eine alternative Perspektive vor. Sie unterscheidet sich von Kleinerts Analyse mit Blick auf die Auslegung zweier Aspekte der Erklärung der polnischen Regierung vom 23. August 1953: die Auslegung der in der Erklärung der polnischen …

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DiscussionJournal Cooperation

Disentangling the cyber security debate

In his insightful LJIL article Kubo Mačák discusses the under-developed state of international cyber security law. He assesses that the absence of cyber security law-making has created a power vacuum that has been filled by non-state actor initiatives, such as the Tallinn Manual. He calls on states that now is the time to reclaim their central role in international lawmaking, in the short-term by articulating their opinio iuris more clearly, …

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Call for ContributionsCultural Heritage in a Post-Colonial WorldSymposium

CfP: Cultural Heritage in a Post-colonial World – New Framings of a Global Legal Problem

The Voelkerrechtsblog is happy to announce an interdisciplinary online symposium on “Cultural Heritage in a Post-colonial World – New Framings of a Global Legal Problem”. Cultural and anthropological objects from colonized or de-facto colonized territories have arrived in Europe in great amounts since the 18th century. Many European metropoles established large collections of those artefacts and human remains to display this shared “heritage” to their people – all projects closely …

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Practitioner's Corner

Leveraging technology to enhance access to justice for children in Africa

To keep a finger on the pulse of time, technology and innovation are central to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Context-informed and locally-adapted technology can be the catalyser to identify barriers in achieving the 2030 agenda and provide solutions for the sustainable development change so desperately needed. Ending all forms of violence against children is an integral part of the SDGs, namely through …

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Current Developments

Endlich! – Erster Haftbefehl gegen einen ranghohen Vertreter des syrischen Assad-Regimes

Zur strafrechtlichen Verfolgung von im syrischen Bürgerkrieg verübten Verbrechen in Deutschland

Können mutmaßliche syrische Völkerrechtsverbrecher einfach unbehelligt nach Europa ein- und wieder ausreisen? Diesen Eindruck musste man bei der Lektüre eines Berichtes gewinnen, der vor einigen Wochen in der französischen Tageszeitung „Le Monde“ erschien. Bereits im Januar diesen Jahres sei Ali Mamluk, der als „Direktor des Nationalen Sicherheitsbüros“ der Ba’ath-Partei, seit Jahrzehnten eine feste Größe in dem syrischen Sicherheits- und Unterdrückungsapparat, auf Einladung des italienischen Geheimdienstes AISE nach Rom geflogen und …

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DiscussionKick-off

Human rights and the international protection of biodiversity – A promising alliance (Part II)

The first part of this post established the intrinsic connection between human rights and the protection of biodiversity, looked at human rights and the environment in international public law in general and examined the conceptual relationship between biodiversity and the environment. The second part centers around the current approach of the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment which promises nothing less than a change of paradigm on …

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DiscussionKick-off

Human rights and the international protection of biodiversity – A promising alliance (Part I)

For a long time, the legal and political endeavours to protect humans from violations of their basic rights seemed in no way connected to the preservation of biodiversity. In the past, this paradigm has been reflected by indifferent international responses to biodiversity issues: Whereas the promotion and protection of human rights has in recent decades become a major concern of the international community and the relationship between human rights and …

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Business and Human RightsCall for ContributionsSymposium

Symposium on Business and Human Rights: Call for Contributions

On June 24, 2016 the United Nations’ Council on Human Rights established an intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations. The working group is tasked with the elaboration of an international legally binding instrument “to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises”. In 2017 the working group’s chairman published a non-binding paper outlining possible elements of a treaty on business and human rights; …

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Current Developments

The first genocide of the 20th century before a domestic court

A New York Court about to decide on its jurisdiction in Rukoro et al. v. Germany

Once more, Germany is confronted with compensation claims concerning wrongs committed in the past (see on this topic already the post by Andreas Buser). After unsuccessful previous cases against Germany by the Ovaherero and Nama people before the Permanent Court of Arbitration and U.S. federal courts in Washington, D.C., the pending class action complaint against the Federal Republic of Germany in the United States District Court Southern District of New York is the …

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Interview

On history, geography, and radical change in international law

An interview with BS Chimni

These are exciting times for international legal scholarship – on this point, the interviewers and Professor BS Chimni can immediately agree. But what are the consequences of recent challenges to the international legal order for critical approaches? Professor Chimni’s groundbreaking work on Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL) has contributed greatly to international legal scholarship during the last decades. A fascinating scholar, an enthusiastic teacher, and an effortlessly charismatic …

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Journal Cooperation

Access to information and the fourth wave of rights

The Inter-American and the European Court of Human Rights, the UN Human Rights Committee, the European Union, Germany, India, South Africa, and Brazil all share one common legal feature: They have recognized “access to information” as an individual fundamental right since the turn of the millennium. Since the 1990s, there has been a veritable “global explosion of freedom of information” as new constitutions have enshrined the right to information, legislators …

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DiscussionKick-off

Neue Initiative der polnischen Regierung in Sachen deutscher Weltkriegsreparationen

Germany v. Italy 2.0?

Erneut fanden sich Anfang Januar 2018 Meldungen über Erwägungen der polnischen Regierung, Reparationsansprüche gegen die Bundesrepublik für Schäden des Landes während der deutschen Besatzung im 2. Weltkrieg geltend zu machen. Nun sollten US-amerikanische Gerichte helfen, die Ansprüche durchzusetzen, so der polnische Botschafter in Deutschland, Andrzej Przyłębski. Einigen dieser Aspekte soll sich dieser Beitrag widmen. Nie verheilte Wunden? Seit dem Regierungswechsel in Warschau im Spätherbst 2015 überholt die neue nationalkonservative PiS-Regierung nicht …

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Current Developments

The Philippines’ move away from the International Criminal Court over the war on drugs: A blow for human rights in Asia

As a signatory to every human rights treaty and being at the forefront of promoting international human rights, Philippines is considered as one of the  “architects” of the United Nations and the human rights system. This was seen as a huge step forward for human rights in Asia. However, now with the decision to withdraw from the Rome Statute, and the International Criminal Court (ICC), this will be seen a …

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Current Developments

Stretching Abstract Reasoning to its Limits

The IACtHR and the Right to a Healthy Environment

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights issued the Advisory Opinion (AO) of 15 November, 2017 (OC-23/17), on the subject matter of the environment and human rights. Its wide-ranging features already sparked a lively debate in the blogosphere (see here, here and here). Whereas some welcome the Court’s engagement with environmental rights, others are either skeptical of the way in which the AO deals with criteria of state responsibility in human …

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Current Developments

Defending the Defenders

Assessing LAC-P10, the new treaty to protect environmental activists in Latin America

The assassination of Berta Cáceres On 3 March 2016 Honduran indigenous activist Berta Cáceres was assassinated. She was a coordinator of the Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH) and one of the leading voices in her people’s fight against Agua Zarca Dam at the Río Gualcarque. Her activism had earned her the Goldman Environmental Prize and years of threats and intimidations by state and non-state actors, which …

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Current Developments

The Kosovo Specialist Chambers

A New Chapter for International Criminal Justice in the Balkans

As the doors were closing on Churchillplein 1, the Hague, the former home of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), only a short walk away a new institution began preparing indictments for war crimes committed during the Yugoslav wars. 

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Current Developments

Rainbow Jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court?

Gender-based Persecution of Gays, Bisexuals and Lesbians as a Crime Against Humanity

On 8 November 2017, something happened which can be seen as a milestone for gay rights: a communication was submitted to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) that includes crimes committed based on the victims’ real or perceived sexual orientation. Such a case would be the first of its kind and, if successful, would create a strong message for the universal prohibition of gender-based crimes for all sexual …

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DiscussionKick-off

Schadensersatzansprüche vor nationalen Gerichten aufgrund von Völkerrechtsverstößen?

Jesner v. Arab Bank

Können ausländische Unternehmen und Individuen die Verletzung von Völkerrechtsnormen durch andere ausländische Unternehmen vor Gericht rügen und Schadenersatzansprüche geltend machen? Die Verfahren gegen Arab Bank Plc. Ein solcher Fall wird derzeit in den USA vor dem Supreme Court verhandelt. In dem Fall Jesner v. Arab Bank stehen sich auf beiden Seiten ausländische, also nicht US-amerikanische, Staatsangehörige gegenüber. Die Klage, die unter dem Alien Tort Statute (ATS) eingereicht wurde, richtet sich …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Intersectionality in Europe: a depoliticized concept?

The reach of intersectionality in Germany has been such that as many disciplinary fields as sociology, cultural studies, ethnology, history, law, philosophy, psychology, migration studies, public policy and of course, gender studies have been touched by it. Whether approached as a theory, heuristic device, method or conceptual tool, intersectionality has been acclaimed as one of the most powerful contributions to feminist scholarship by a number of authors. Numerous feminist scholars …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Whiteness as International Citizenship in European Union Law

The European Union admits that its Romani citizens – the continent’s largest ethnic minority – are excluded and denigrated. And the EU seems to be trying to do something about it. Yet the consensus is that the EU is failing miserably. One of the most effective critiques of the Union on this point is that the position of Romani people has actually gotten worse since their countries joined and they …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawInterviewSymposium

“There is still a lot of work to be done.”

An interview with Patricia Tuitt on the meaning and tasks of Critical Race Theory

Patricia Tuitt is a UK based legal academic with a sustained track record of teaching, research and strategic management within the field of critical legal studies. She has written extensively on international refugee law and the European Union, engaging critical race and postcolonial perspectives in various contexts. In this interview, she was willing to speak about her understanding of critical race theory and of its significance for international law. The …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Framing Race and Law in Europe

To frame “Race and Law in Europe” involves a set of basic questions: 1) What is Race? 2) What is Law? and 3) What is Europe? The real challenge is to elaborate on the historical, epistemological, sociological and legal connections among these three questions without equating or reducing “race” to “racism”, without reifying law as a monolithic field, and without homogenizing Europe. These themes deserve their own in-depth analyses, although …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

The Framing of the African Union in International Criminal Law: A Racialized Logic

The International Criminal Court (ICC) ‘has been put in place only for African countries, only for poor countries…Every year that passes, I am proved right.… Rwanda cannot be part of colonialism, slavery and imperialism’. This anti-colonial sentiment by Rwandan President and newly elected chairperson of the African Union (AU), Paul Kagame, has become widespread within the AU in response to the Court’s overwhelming investigation and prosecution of Africans. Yet, many of …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Learning from Anthropology

Realizing a Critical Race Approach to (International) Law

Introduction Despite anthropology’s troublesome contribution to the colonial project, the discipline as it is today has much to offer to critical race theory (CRT) and postcolonial approaches to international law. Already in the 1930s, Franz Boas and his students began to challenge the Eurocentrism, modernism and colonialism of anthropology. They developed a critique of cultural evolutionism, according to which culture was understood as evolving towards the “Western ideal”. Instead, they …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Building Islam as a race in French colonial law

The conquest of Algeria introduced in French law new chapters pertaining to the treatment of indigenous people. In fact, the French Algeria gained the status of department in 1848 and then, was incorporated into the territory of France with, normally, the application of the Code Civil, the civil law. However, the colonial authorities developed in parallel a set of laws with the intention to exclude native Algerians from nationality and …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Sind Juden weiß?

Wie Antidiskriminierungsrecht am Antisemitismus scheitert

Das umstrittene Urteil des Landgerichts Frankfurt zum Flugverbot für israelische Staatsbürger bei Kuwait Airways ist auch in antidiskriminierungsrechtlicher Hinsicht interessant. Es zeigt, wie schwer es Gerichten fällt Antisemitismus unter die Kategorien des Antidiskriminierungsrechts zu subsumieren und ihn in seinen aktuellen Ausformungen zu erfassen. Nicht nur in Deutschland.

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

The Concept of Race in International Criminal Law

The Nazis defined the Jews as a race inferior to the Aryan race, the Khmer Rouge identified the ‘new people’ as enemies with a biologically dissimilar essence, and in Darfur (Sudan), the Janjaweed militia labelled their enemies derogatorily as ‘Zourga’, or black Africans. Seemingly, these victim classifications all have a racial denominator in common. Yet, how does international criminal law in general and the law of genocide in particular define …

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Critical Race Perspectives on International LawSymposium

We need to talk about ‘race’

Symposium: Critical Race Perspectives on International Law

“Race is the child of racism, not the father,” writes Ta-Nehisi Coates in “Between the World and Me”. Such understanding of race, not as an empirical category but as a category for analysing power relations and structural discrimination, underlies the symposium “Critical Race Perspectives on International Law”.  We take inspiration from the important work of critical race theorists who posit that racism is not simply a matter of individual prejudice …

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Current Developments

Opt-in vs. Opt-out = opt-in-opt-out?

On the activation of the ICC’s jurisdiction over the crime of aggression

In December 2017, the States Parties to the International Criminal Court (ICC) had the chance to realize in New York what Robert H. Jackson called for in his opening statement before the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg. While international criminal law was only applied against German aggressors at that time, the U.S. Chief Prosecutor emphasized that the condemnation of aggressive war should be the benchmark for any other nation in …

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DiscussionKick-off

One law to rule them all

On the extraterritorial applicability of the new EU General Data Protection Regulation

Setting the gold standard … In May 2016, the EU adopted its long-awaited new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and thereby opened a new chapter in the history of European and global data protection law. Meeting the challenges of the 21st century globally linked information-society, it took the EU-institutions more than four years and almost 4,000 amendments to finally agree on a compromise text. While elaborating the GDPR, the EU tried …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Cleavages in international law and the danger of a pull towards non-compliance

International law faces difficult times, with cleavages running deep between what is often labelled “the West” on the one hand, and Russia on the other hand. With the annexation of Crimea Russia has engaged in a form of conflict that was considered passé in Europe. It is accordingly seen as being responsible for the polarization of international relations by many Western States. Moscow tells a different story of the deterioration …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Who Holds Russia’s Judges and Public Prosecutors to Account?

How the International Community Fails to Effectively Address Judicial Harassment of Human Rights Defenders in the Russian Federation

This piece is about the growing number of politically-motivated charges and convictions against human rights defenders in Russia and the absence of credible monitoring or audit procedures to hold judges and public prosecutors to account for their misconduct. Despite political backlashes to judicial independence in countries such as Hungary and Poland, Europe is generally perceived as a powerhouse for a strong and working justice system in which courts protect human …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Is Russia the Guardian of Humanitarian Intervention?

In the UN Security Council, the Russian Federation has repeatedly put forward in no uncertain terms its stance regarding humanitarian intervention and its concern that this fairly recent concept may be misused to press Western influence and regime change. Thus, Russia used its veto powers four times to block resolutions on Syria that Russia perceives to be damaging its ally, the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad. Russia’s argument on fearing regime change rests …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

The EU-Russia Civil Society Forum

Fostering the Voice of Civil Society in the International Legal Debate

When speaking of the role of Russia in the contemporary international legal debate, it is helpful not only to focus on particular topics and questions, but – as with all other debates – to start with the question, at what levels and in which formats such a legal debate takes place; which actors are actively engaged in it or can actively participate in it, and what impact it has. To …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Das EU-Russland Zivilgesellschaftsforum

Die Stimme der Zivilgesellschaft in der internationalen Rechtsdebatte stärken

Spricht man über die Rolle Russlands in der zeitgenössischen internationalen Rechtsdebatte, so ist es hilfreich, sich nicht nur auf die konkreten Themen und Fragen zu fokussieren, sondern – wie bei allen anderen Debatten auch – sich zunächst zu fragen, auf welchen Ebenen und in welchen Formaten diese Rechtsdebatte stattfindet, welche Akteure daran aktiv teilnehmen bzw. teilnehmen können, und mit welcher Auswirkung. Die Kommunikationswissenschaftler verwenden dafür die Lasswell-Formel: “Who says what …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

Russia, international law, and the melting of the Arctic

The melting ice in the polar caps is one of humanity’s contemporary ecological anxieties. Climate change scientists have suggested that there is a high likelihood that the Arctic sea ice cover will get thinner and continue to shrink. Likewise, the Northern Hemisphere spring snow cover is expected to decrease during the 21st century as global mean surface temperature rises. Are the current international legal mechanisms sufficiently equipped to respond to …

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Current Developments

Cheating Chile

The (il)legality of information and the World Bank’s “Doing Business” ranking

A rare mea culpa emanated from the leading international development institution, the World Bank, last week. The Bank’s Chief Economist, Paul Romer, told the Wall Street Journal: “I want to make a personal apology to Chile, and to any other country where we conveyed the wrong impression.” Romer, who took his post in late 2016, said he had found “irregularities” in the World Bank’s flagship publication, the “Doing Business” ranking. …

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Russian Perspectives on International LawSymposium

‘Peaceful’ and ‘Remedial’ Annexations of Crimea

This post analyzes the ‘two annexations’ of Crimea in the Russian narrative of ‘reclaiming its historical rights’ over the peninsula in 2014. As many aspects surrounding the occupation of Crimea have been extensively debated in scholarly writings, I will limit my focus on two key concepts that Russia has advanced: Ukraine’s ‘peaceful annexation’ of Crimea in 1991; and Russia’s ‘remedial annexation’ of Crimea in 2014. My main aim is to …